Pinterest Post: Morphing Recipes – Chorizo Meatloaf + Clean Chicken Chili

Pinterest is my favorite way to waste spend time. I get new outfit ideas, recipes, and quotes to live by that I write on my chalkboard wall (now freshly painted in anticipation of selling our condo).

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This one stayed up every day as a friendly reminder before I headed out the door:

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Every Thursday I’ll be posting tried and true pins along with my favorite quote of the week that I’ll be living by.

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Note: all pins can be found on my Quotable board as some have mis-documented source credits so I am not always able to give proper credit to the talented designers who have created these.

Onward and Upward! This week we celebrated the 1st birthday of the son of a dear friend of ours. This momma is amazingly domestic in all the best ways and made this amazing clean chili recipe. And Holy mother of pearl, it was some of the best chili I had ever tasted. That’s saying a lot coming from a Midwestern girl like me!

Now while I was craving it again, I only had ingredients on hand to make my favorite paleo chorizo meatloaf.

So what did I do? RECIPE MORPHING COMMENCE! (Say that in your best transformers voice and it sounds way cooler in your head….judge me.)

Clean(ish?) CrockpotChorizo Chili
Ingredients
– 1 lb. ground mild chorizo, cooked
– 1 lb. lean ground beef or turkey, cooked and drained
– 1 cup crimini mushrooms, chopped
– 3 medium carrots, cubed
– 1 small onion, diced
– 2 cloves garlic, minced
– 1 can black beans with liquid
– 2 cans fire-roasted tomatoes with liquid
– 1 small can tomato paste
– 2 Tablespoons Chili powder
– salt, and pepper to taste

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Directions
1. In your crock pot, combine all ingredients except salt, pepper, and spinach.
2. Mix well and cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-8.
3. Taste mixture and add salt and pepper to taste. I wait to do this because depending on where you get your chorizo, the flavor will differ. Ohio chorizo bought from the big box grocer tastes nothing like its equivalent in California!
4. If you want, you can add in 2 cups of baby spinach (chopped) to the mix and cook a half hour longer. I think it beefs up the nutrition value even more and you can hardly taste it!
5. Serve with plain Greek yogurt or light sour cream, shredded sharp cheddar, and scallions for a completed dinner!

for those of you on Weight Watchers like me, this recipe is 8PP+ for 1 cup of chili, not counting the toppings. I like to serve it with this cornbread for a well rounded and satisfying meal

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Creating an In-Home Spa

Harsh reality: I only have two more months to enjoy my 3 soaking tub-clad bathrooms that have been transformed from “ho-hum” to “oh wow!”

Photo proof? Got it.
Before

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After

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See what I mean? We DIYed it all; Ripped out the fiberglass surrounds, installed gorgeous porcelain tile, restained cabinets, framed mirrors, installed built in medicine cabinets, got new lights, and painted the rooms light gray. I can feel the calm just describing it!

So now what makes the perfect in-home spa? I think it varies for everyone.

My perfect slice of relaxation heaven? Lots of candles, bath oil or a bath bomb, and spa music (thanks Spa Radio on Pandora!). Follow that with painting my nails and doing my hair and I’d have to say….
You’re dreaming! Who has that much time? 😉

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But in all seriousness, take some time to spoil yourself. Enjoy an in-Home spa experience with some of these products and instructables!

Bath Bombs
LUSH – I cannot wait to splurge on some of these bath bombs and bubble bars! I’ve heard amazing things, though I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little afraid of the color dying my tub…any of you have experience with LUSH bath products? Ease my worries please!

DIY it! Naturally Martha Stewart knows how! She has great tips on where to find ingredients and a great cocktail of fragrance options!

Bubbles

My favorite way of getting the light layer of bubbles I love is with Neutrogena’s Body Oil. Go easy, as a little of this sesame-based oil goes a loooooong way. If you overdo it, you could climb out of the bath smelling a bit like your fave Chinese take-out.

DIY it! This recipe from Live Laugh Rowe sounds super luxe! With easy ingredients and directions, this would make a perfect gift for others….or yourself!

Burn, Baby, Burn! Candles, that is.

Don’t get me started on my love for all things scented. My home is filled with Glade/Febreeze candles (keeps the rooms smelling neutral and fresh) and it’s a good thing my husband keeps me in check and doesn’t let me roam unattended in the candle section of any store. If you asked, though, my fave brands for spa-time are Voluspa for Anthropologie (whichever scent fits your mood) and my wedding candle (shown above) from World Market that’s submerged in coffee beans that fills my bathroom with a Madagascar Vanilla and Coffee Bean scent that is oh-so-intoxicatingly-subtle.

DIY it! Live Simply has combined my fave scent ever (rosemary, mmmm) and has spa-ed it with the addition of lavender into an amazingly rich soy candle. I think when I make this I might just add in a bit of lemon zest to really make it my own!

Some DIY extras for fun? Why not! Indulge!
Vanilla Rose Body Scrub
Whipped Body Butter
Vanilla Bath Salts
Cocoa Butter Bath Truffles

What products do you love to achieve an in-home spa experience? Leave me a comment below!

Toddler Tips: Learning Colors

Maybe it’s just the little one I spend my days with, but it seems like toddlers get hooked on a color and that is the answer to every “what color is _____?” question.

A cow? It’s blue.

That yellow school bus? Also blue.

How about her favorite food? You guessed it. Blue.
Her favorite food right now is peas, y’all.

Every once in a blue moon (see what I did there? 😉 ) I’ll get an “orange!!!” out of her, but that’s still pretty inaccurate.

So enter winter vacation and I get to pinning (big surprise) and I stumble upon this amazing article about teaching Color Immersion, as I can only think to describe it. This genius momma, Jessie, uses her 11 week program to completely surround her littles in one color each week. She works it into playtime, reading, and even bath time! What a super-star mom!

If you’ve got little ones at home and are looking for creative ways to mix up their learning, check out Jessie’s blog immediately!

Happy New Year!

Hey y’all!

It’s been forever!!!

I missed you.

As I sit in Starbucks with my homemade Green Island Smoothie (recipe below), I feel completely and utterly content. All mornings should start like this: Green smoothie, cup of hot coffee, writing by a sunrise-viewing window.

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Taking time off has been a bit therapeutic and was definitely necessary as we’ve started the process of selling our condo in Cali to move back to Florida this spring, but I think I’m finally ready to commit to writing again.

I watch my stats and see how much traffic this labor-of-love has gained in its short two year life. You guys are so awesome!

I want to write stuff that y’all want to read. I want to write about everything I love. In order to do that, however, I need some feedback. What do you love most? DIY projects? Pinterest posts? Printables? Recipes? Fashion focused posts?

let me know!

I am multi-tasking personality which makes me jump from topic to topic quickly, so I need your help to keep me focused. I can’t promise to post every day, but if you could leave me your top 3 fave topics in the comments below, I’d love you even more than I already do 😉

Green Island Smoothie
Ingredients
– 1 ripe banana
– Juice of 1 orange or large tangerine
– 1 handful baby spinach
– 1/2 cup frozen pineapple
-1/2 cup frozen peaches
– 1 cup filtered water or coconut water

Directions
Combine all ingredients in the blender and blend on high until silky smooth.

It looks way cuter in a mug or other container, but the impromptu urge to write in a Starbucks on a random Tuesday results in a messy, half drank shaker bottle…judge me.

Here’s to a brand New Year full of surprises, good news, and growth!